Broccoli, parsley on our plate!Exotic vegetables to make international debut
11: Forget famed apples and saffron,
Kashmir is all set to export exotic vegetables including broccoli and parsley
to different countries across the globe.
from traditional crop patterns, Jammu Kashmir government has embarked on a
mission to popularize cultivation of exotic vegetables that have a huge demand
in the international market.
Agriculture has started consulting framers to convince them for growing
non-traditional crops in coming season. The varieties zeroed in on including
broccoli, lettuce, snow peas, parsley and sweet corn.
Department of Agriculture, Altaf Aijaz Andrabi told The Kashmir Monitor that
they have already imported seeds of these vegetable varieties from Holland and
“The idea behind
this programme is to ensure massive expansion of vegetable varieties in
Kashmir. We expect to grow exotic crops on at least 500 hectares of land in
coming season. Vegetables like broccoli, lettuce will introduce our farmers to
international market. Besides, it will multiply their earnings,” he said.
100 of 48,000 hectares of land is under vegetable cultivation in Kashmir. Each
hectare of land produces 325 quintals of vegetables.
vegetables are seen as essential component in rich man’s diet, which
fortunately is getting popular in India.
A farmer who sells cauliflower at Rs 20 per kilogram can earn Rs 100-150
for a kilogram of broccoli,” he said.
To check the
viability of the programme, the department has consulted scientists for their
feedback. “Kashmir has a seasonal advantage. We have a climate which is better
than Europe. Why can’t our farmers be at par with them in their earnings? Our
climate is best suited for the cultivation of broccoli, lettuce and parsley,”
treading carefully seeking better marketing facility and other promotional
programmes to popularize exotic crop cultivation in the valley.
“It is not only
about growing a vegetable. There has to be buyer, who will import these
vegetables. Care has also to be taken about shipping of these vegetables during
winter when highway closes for days together,” said Ghulam Mohammad a grower